Month:

July 2019

UH scientist receives grant to examine understudied part of glaucoma

first_img Source:http://www.uh.edu/news-events/stories/2018/june2018/06192018-glaucoma-nih.php Jun 20 2018UH College of Optometry biomedical engineer Vijaykrishna Raghunathan has received $765,000 from the National Institutes of Health to examine an understudied part of glaucoma – the ebb and flow of aqueous humor, the liquid in the eye whose regulation controls eye pressure. His work could lead to a pharmaceutical cure for the irreversible disease.The most common form of glaucoma, called open-angle glaucoma, is typically associated with elevated intraocular pressure (IOP) due to increased resistance to outflow of the liquid through an area of tissue known as the trabecular meshwork (TM). In a healthy eye, with normal resistance to elimination, the liquid is constantly being secreted and produced. In patients with glaucoma, the resistance to these secretions are increased, and the IOP is high potentially because the liquid is not flowing out normally, but rather staying inside the eye, building pressure.Related StoriesAbcam Acquire Off-The-Shelf Diploid Library of Over 2,800 Knockout Cell LinesSlug serves as ‘command central’ for determining breast stem cell healthStudy: Megakaryocytes play an important role in cell migrationIt is widely accepted that outflow itself is not uniform across the TM but is highly segmental with regions of relatively high flow and low flow. Although this is well recognized, why such differences exist and what their implications in disease are is unclear.”We want to know why we have segmental outflow and that’s what we are studying with the grant,” he said. He previously published a paper reporting that in glaucoma the meshwork is stiffer, particularly in the low flow regions. “Increased stiffness could mean more resistance and the high flow areas may compensate by becoming softer.”Add to the mix – the human TM is approximately 20-fold stiffer in glaucoma, suggesting a prominent role of TM mechanobiology.”The mechanism by which this occurs is not known, nor is it known whether these changes are a cause of elevated IOP associated with glaucoma, or whether they are a result of elevated IOP and disease,” said Raghunathan, who compares the dilemma to the chicken and egg phenomenon – which came first?Raghunathan and co-principal investigator Janice Vranka of Oregon Health & Science University, are examining the mechanobiology of the TM cells, looking at how the mechanical properties of the microenvironment effects cell behavior and how that governs cell function as it pertains to segmental flow. That will lead them to understand how to lower resistance to the liquid flow and balance the pressure in the eye.”We want to strike the balance where there is some high flow, some low flow but it is maintained in homeostasis,” said Raghunathan.As the leading cause of blindness worldwide, glaucoma is something Raghunathan would like to control therapeutically. He thinks he can, by improving the newest class of drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration in February 2018.It’s a first-in-class drug and has the potential to impact the TM,” said Raghunathan. “If we understand the intrinsic differences between the high and low flow we can find a way to control the resistance therapeutically.”last_img read more

Porvair Sciences introduces JG Finneran range of high strength headspace vials

first_imgJul 26 2018Porvair Sciences announces its JG Finneran range of high strength rounded or flat-bottomed headspace vials which are available in 6 mL, 10 mL, 20 mL, and 27 mL capacities. Available in either clear glass, or amber glass for light sensitive samples, each vial’s wide opening allows samples to be simply and quickly added. These headspace vials are manufactured to specific tight tolerances and are guaranteed to fit and perform with all brands of automated chromatography instruments. Manufactured from durable type I borosilicate glass, with low metal content, Finneran headspace vials protect your sample from destabilizing or leaching. The Finneran range of headspace vials are designed for high pressure strength during the heating process thus reducing the possibility of cracking or strain lines.Headspace vials are available in 100/pack or 1000/pack, each packed in clean environments to ensure you receive your high-quality vials, contaminant free. All crimp-cap headspace vials can be matched with caps and liners or with butyl rubber stoppers from the Finneran range. Source:https://www.porvair-sciences.com/last_img read more

How fat grizzly bears stay diabetesfree

first_img Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Every fall, grizzly bears pack on the pounds in preparation for their winter hibernation. In humans, such extreme weight gain would likely lead to diabetes or other metabolic diseases, but the bears manage to stay healthy year after year. Their ability to remain diabetes-free, researchers have now discovered, can be chalked up to the shutting down of a protein found in fat cells. The discovery could lead to new diabetes drugs that turn off the same pathway in humans.The findings are “provocative and interesting,” says biologist Sandy Martin of the University of Colorado, Denver, who was not involved in the new work. “They found a natural solution to a problem that we haven’t been able to solve.”As people gain weight, fat, liver, and muscle cells typically become less sensitive to the hormone insulin—which normally helps control blood sugar levels—and insulin levels rise. In turn, that increased insulin prevents the breakdown of fat cells, causing a vicious cycle that can lead to full-blown insulin resistance, or diabetes. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwecenter_img Developing new diabetes drugs has been hampered by the fact that findings from many mouse models of diabetes have not translated to humans. So Kevin Corbit, a senior scientist at Thousand Oaks, California–based drug company Amgen, decided to start looking at obesity and metabolic disease in other animals. “When I was thinking about things that are quite fat, one of the first things I thought of was bears, and what they do to prepare to go into hibernation,” he says. “But of course you don’t see bears running around with diabetes and heart disease.”Corbit and scientists at the Washington State University Bear Center in Pullman measured blood sugar levels, insulin levels, body weight, and other markers of the metabolism in six captive grizzly bears before, during, and after hibernation—in October, January, and May. Surprisingly, even as each bear gained more than a hundred pounds in the fall, their cells remained sensitive to insulin, and their insulin and blood sugar levels stayed constant. In people, such an immense weight gain would likely cause insulin resistance. It wasn’t until well after they’d begun hibernating that bears experienced a temporary, seasonal episode of insulin resistance, but even that was completely reversed come springtime. “This type of physiology had never been described before and was completely opposite what’s seen in humans,” Corbit says.When he and his collaborators analyzed levels of more molecules in the bears’ blood, liver, and fat cells, they found out what was controlling the insulin sensitivity and resistance independently from weight gain or loss: a protein called PTEN. In the fall, the bears have switched-off versions of PTEN present in their fat cells, Corbit’s team reports today in Cell Metabolism. As a result, the cells continue responding to insulin—and the signals to store sugar—even as the bears gain weight. For bears, the shutdown protein helps maximize sugar storage in their bodies for the long winter ahead.The finding could also help humans, Corbit says. Because shutting off PTEN helps obese bears maintain insulin sensitivity, turning off the pathway in overweight people could prevent or treat diabetes, he suggests. Interestingly, he points out, a previous study found that people missing one gene for PTEN production are less likely to develop metabolic or cardiovascular disease even as they gain weight. Those people do develop other diseases, including cancer, but Corbit suspects that’s because the PTEN levels are diminished body-wide. If scientists could turn it off only in fat cells—like bears do—these side effects might be diminished.Metabolic disease specialist Abhimanyu Garg of the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas says that more evidence is needed to support any link between the bear finding and human diabetes. And you’d have to be careful with a drug that turns off PTEN, even if it’s only in fat cells, he says. Even if it could treat diabetes, it might also cause increased weight gain. After all, it helps bears store up their winter fat, Garg notes. “You might create a situation where patients are metabolically healthy but you’re trading that for joint problems and back problems and arthritis.” Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Countrylast_img read more

Second Ebola vaccine trial may be too little too late

first_img Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) The second ever real-life test of an Ebola vaccine began today in Sierra Leone. It is unlikely, however, to achieve its main goal: proving that the vaccine, a livestock pathogen modified with an Ebola surface protein, protects humans against the deadly disease. That’s because there simply may not be enough patients.Since peaking at the end of November, the number of newly reported cases in Sierra Leone has dropped steadily, from 95 4 weeks ago to just 21 last week. That makes it very unlikely, that the trial—led by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health and Sanitation—can get a statistically significant result, says Stephan Becker, a virologist at the University of Marburg, Germany.Together with the College of Medicine and Allied Health Science at the University of Sierra Leone, CDC and the ministry aim to vaccinate 6000 nurses, doctors, and other frontline workers battling the Ebola outbreak over the coming months. The vaccine—developed by the Public Health Agency of Canada’s National Microbiology Laboratory and now backed by pharmaceutical giant Merck—was made by stitching a gene coding for an Ebola surface protein into the vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV), a relative of rabies that infects cattle, horses, and pigs. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Emailcenter_img Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country There has been no discussion of scrapping the trial, which may end up costing about $25 million, said Anne Schuchat, director of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases at a press conference today. “However, we did decide that it was very important to adjust our design to maximize the chance that we would be able to answer key questions,” she said. Instead of a classic stepped-wedge trial, which introduces a vaccine to different groups in phases and then compares results from those who were vaccinated early with those who were vaccinated later, the investigators are now starting a randomized trial, in which individual participants will receive the vaccine either immediately or after a period of 6 months. The new design increases the time that unvaccinated people—the control group—will be observed.At the end of the study, researchers will compare the rates of infection among the vaccinated and unvaccinated groups. Statistical modelling suggests that to get a significant result, 67 participants would have to be infected with Ebola if the vaccine is 50% efficacious. If the vaccine is 90% efficacious, as few as 17 infections might yield a significant result.Even with a low probability of getting those results, Becker says going ahead with the trial—called STRIVE (Sierra Leone Trial to Introduce a Vaccine against Ebola)—is a good idea because it may yield important information about the VSV vector. That could be helpful in designing other vaccines based on that virus. “And the trials might still save a few lives while doing that,” he says. The researchers are also collecting data on how safe the vaccine is and how well it stimulates the immune system, information that might pave a way for the vaccine to be licensed even if there is no final proof of its protection. An ongoing trial may also prove crucial if there is another uptick in cases, says John-Arne Røttingen of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health in Oslo.STRIVE is the second phase III trial of this particular Ebola vaccine candidate. Last month, a World Health Organization (WHO)–sponsored trial was launched in Guinea. In that trial, called a ring vaccination, rings of people living close to newly discovered Ebola patients are identified and vaccinated either immediately or after 21 days. So far, five of a planned 190 rings have been vaccinated. There have been more new Ebola infections in Guinea than in Sierra Leone over the last several weeks, making the WHO trial more likely to yield results.*The Ebola Files: Science and Science Translational Medicine have made a collection of research and news articles on the Ebola virus and the current outbreak freely available to researchers and the general public.last_img read more

Four vaccine myths and where they came from

first_imgFalse: Countering mercury from vaccines can make children betterIn the mid-2000s, riding the wave of concerns about thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative, Maryland doctor Mark Geier and his son, David, began to promote a theory that a pathological interaction between mercury and testosterone explained many symptoms of autism. That claim came after the Geiers published a few studies suggesting a link between thimerosal and autism—studies that the Institute of Medicine characterized as having “serious methodological flaws.” Despite that review, the Geiers proceeded with their controversial work. They established an unapproved treatment that involved daily injections of leuprolide (Lupron) , a drug used to treat prostate cancer and to chemically castrate sex offenders. In children, the drug is approved only to treat precocious puberty, a rare condition in which puberty begins before the age of 8 years. Side effects in kids can include bone and heart damage. Leuprolide also carries a risk of exacerbating seizure disorders, a condition commonly associated with autism. The Geiers sometimes paired those injections with chemical chelation, a risky treatment for patients with heavy metal poisoning. To peddle their treatments to parents and insurance companies at a cost upward of $5000 a month, the Geiers improperly diagnosed children with precocious puberty—without performing the necessary diagnostic tests. They also misled parents into believing that the regimen was approved to treat autism, according to a 2011 investigation by the Maryland Board of Physicians. The board revoked Mark Geier’s state medical license, saying his practice “far exceeds his qualifications and expertise,” and other states followed suit. His son, who holds only a Bachelor of Arts degree, was charged with practicing medicine without a license. Here’s the visual proof of why vaccines do more good than harm By Lindzi WesselApr. 27, 2017 , 1:15 PM Four vaccine myths and where they came from The riskiest vaccine? The one that is not given Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Kennedy has continued to use his name to promote the idea, and in recent months vaccine skeptics have called for a new “vaccine safety” commission with Kennedy at its head. Yet according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta and the World Health Organization, no evidence exists that thimerosal from vaccines causes health problems in kids.In 2001, well before Kennedy’s article or his related book, thimerosal was removed from all childhood vaccines in the United States except multidose vials of flu vaccine. “If it did cause autism, the prediction would be that once thimerosal was taken out of vaccines that then the numbers of cases of autism should have leveled off or gone down. But that did not happen,” says Frank DeStefano, director of CDC’s Immunization Safety Office. A rumor that autism incidence dropped in Denmark after it removed thimerosal in 1992 also is not true. The rumor apparently arose from a misinterpretation of epidemiological data. Vaccines on trial: U.S. court separates fact from fiction The vaccine wars Debunking myths, owning real risks, and courting doubters False: Mercury in vaccines acts as a neurotoxinIn 2005 the magazines Rolling Stone and Salon copublished a story by environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. (nephew of former President John F. Kennedy) alleging a government conspiracy to cover up evidence that thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative once used in vaccines, can cause brain problems, including autism. Multiple corrections soon appeared, including one noting that Kennedy had incorrectly stated the mercury levels. In 2011 Salon retracted and removed the story, noting “continued revelations of the flaws and even fraud tainting the science behind the connection.” Can skeptical parents be persuaded to vaccinate? But the MMR-autism falsehood made headlines again in 2016 with the release of Vaxxed, a movie Wakefield directed that alleges a cover-up by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The story features bioengineer Brian Hooker, who took issue with a 2004 CDC study that found no overall difference in vaccination rates between kids with and without autism. Hooker reanalyzed the data in 2014 and claimed CDC had hidden evidence that the vaccine could increase autism risk in black boys. In fact, CDC noted in the paper that rates of vaccination in the oldest age group were slightly higher in kids with autism. But CDC says that this effect was “most likely a result of immunization requirements for preschool special education program attendance in children with autism.”Such claims prompted a slew of studies finding no evidence that MMR causes autism. For example, a 2014 meta-analysis in Vaccine examined studies involving a total of almost 1.3 million people. That same year, a paper in the Journal of the American Medical Association reported that no difference existed in autism rates between thousands of vaccinated and unvaccinated children. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country False: Vaccination can cause autismIn 1998, U.K. doctor Andrew Wakefield published a study in The Lancet suggesting that the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine could trigger autism. In the years after, MMR vaccination rates among 2-year-olds in England dropped below 80%. But the claim began to unravel in 2004 after journalist Brian Deer reported undisclosed conflicts of interest: Wakefield had applied for a patent on his own measles vaccine and had received money from a lawyer trying to sue companies making the MMR vaccine. Citing further concerns about ethics and misrepresentation, The Lancet retracted the paper in 2010. Shortly after, the United Kingdom’s General Medical Council permanently pulled Wakefield’s medical license. Email False: Spreading out vaccines can be safer for kidsSome vaccine skeptics contend that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) current vaccination schedule, which protects children from 14 diseases before age 2, requires too many vaccines in too short a time—overloading children’s immune systems early in life. That overload, the skeptics argue, leaves children prone to a host of disorders, including neurodevelopmental delays and diabetes. Experts roundly dismiss those claims. A child’s immune system must cope with thousands of foreign antigens each day, whereas the 2014 recommended vaccine schedule exposes a child to only about 300 antigens by the age of 2, according to CDC. One estimate, by vaccine expert Paul Offit of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia in Pennsylvania, suggests 11 vaccines given to an infant at one time would temporarily “use up” only 0.1% of the child’s immune system. And although the number of recommended vaccines has risen over the years, advances in vaccine development mean that the number of antigens contained in those vaccines has decreased—yet rates of autism and diabetes have not.In a 2015 survey of 534 pediatricians and family doctors published in the journal Pediatrics, only about 1% agreed that vaccines should be spread out. But almost all of them had sometimes given in to parent requests to do so, and some doctors have published “alternative” vaccination schedules. But alternative schedules pose many problems, Offit says. The most obvious is that extending the schedule leaves children vulnerable to dangerous diseases for longer. Spacing out vaccinations also makes it more likely that kids will not get all their shots. One proposed alternative schedule would require 19 doctor visits over 6 years—12 of those by age 2. Requiring more visits increases the burden on parents and could expose children to more illnesses from sick patients in waiting rooms, Offit says.last_img read more

Top stories A Viking warrior woman PETAs targeting of postdocs and where

first_img Top stories: A Viking warrior woman, PETA’s targeting of postdocs, and where spacecraft go to die By Giorgia GuglielmiSep. 15, 2017 , 3:20 PM (Left to right): Bo Veisland, MI&I/Science Source; NASA/JPL; Ronaldo Schemidt/AFP/Getty Images Email Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country DNA proves fearsome Viking warrior was a womanA 10th century Viking unearthed in the 1880s was like a figure from Richard Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries: an elite warrior buried with a sword, an ax, a spear, arrows, a knife, two shields, and a pair of warhorses. And like a mythical Valkyrie, a new study published late last week found that the warrior was a woman—the first high-status female Viking warrior to be identified.PETA versus the postdoc: Animal rights group targets young researcher for first time For decades, the animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has focused its efforts on established researchers. But the group has recently launched an aggressive campaign against a postdoc at Yale University studying stress in wild house sparrows who is still near the beginning of her scientific career. PETA insists that the postdoc’s status as an early-career scientist has nothing to do with its campaign, but critics worry that the organization is trying to send a message to all young scientists: Don’t even think about getting into animal research.Solar system graveyard: Where spacecraft go to dieAfter 13 years in orbit, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft this morning completed its “death dive” into Saturn’s upper atmosphere. But Cassini is just one of the 42 spacecraft that found their final resting places on other planets. Where did these other robotic explorers go? Who sent them? And how did they die?Unusual Mexico earthquake may have relieved stress in seismic gapWhen a magnitude-8.2 earthquake struck the coast of Mexico’s Chiapas state early this month, the handful of scientists that study the region were stunned, but not altogether surprised. For more than a century, there had been little activity to study—precisely why they thought the area could be due for a big one. Now, they are working to figure out how much, if any, of the 125-kilometer-long Tehuantepec gap along Mexico’s Pacific coast slipped in the quake, which killed more than 90 people and destroyed or severely damaged the homes of 2.3 million more.Gut microbes could help trigger multiple sclerosisThe trillions of bacteria that live in our intestines, known collectively as the gut microbiome, have been linked to maladies from eye disease to rheumatoid arthritis. Now, two new studies have added another disease: multiple sclerosis, an autoimmune disorder that strips away nerve cells’ protective covers, leading to muscle weakness, blindness, and even death. What’s more, the studies suggest how our gut microbes make the immune system turn against nerve cells—a finding that could lead to treatments, like drugs based on microbial byproducts, that might improve the course of the disease.last_img read more

A final dash across the United States updates from the 2018 March

first_img Don Duggan-Haas of the Paleontological Research Institution in Ithaca, New York, offers a few sign tips on the website of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers. “If science saved your life, or the life of a loved one, say it,” he writes. Then, you can “use the other side of your sign for your geoscience message.”The website a plus has “13 awesome signs to inspire you before the march for science this weekend.” And in case you missed it last year, STAT had “The 31 best signs people took to the March for Science.” And Bustle had “30 funny March for Science sign ideas.”On Twitter, some folks say they are having a hard time deciding on their message: Katie Langin The marching is underway in Australia Hours away from the beginning of the March for Science here in the eastern United States, the marching got started elsewhere around the globe. In Australia, events are planned for at least eight cities. Brainstorming for tomorrow’s #MarchForScience and I think I have hit a wall (and can’t find the rest of the markers.)Don’t worry @FieldMuseum I will work on something a bit more, uhh, creative. pic.twitter.com/PQJ6v9dUeA— Heidi (@heidyhoho) April 14, 2018 Kieznerds organizers worried that after last year’s successful event, another march would just be a “poor copy.” Global March for Science 2018. Kickoff in Sydney. Many thanks to organising team. Adam Spencer super MC. Focusing on need for science @iSTEMAustralia pic.twitter.com/g00WWusmCR— Ken Silburn (@KenSilburn) April 14, 2018 After a rally on the National Mall, science supporters marched to the U.S. Capitol. Jeff Mervis Sign up for our daily newsletter Get more great content like this delivered right to you! Country A final dash across the United States: updates from the 2018 March for Science March for Science in Townsville. So inspiring! #ScienceMarchTSV #ScienceMarchAu #ScienceNotSilence #KeepMarching #MarchForScience @RACI_HQ @RACI_Inorganic @RACIQld #ozchem @jcu @peterjunk2 pic.twitter.com/zB5Tz3I0hl— Vicki Junk (@VickiJunk) April 14, 2018 Don’t have your sign yet? Everyone is offering ideasLast year, signmaking parties were a popular pastime in the days before the March for Science. This year, a bevy of websites have put up stories aimed at giving marchers who might be at a loss for words (and pictures) a few ideas for their placards. A sampling:At Thrillist, Joe McGauley offers “Funny, powerful, and clever poster ideas for the science march this weekend.” “[It]’s always a bit tough to figure out how best to get a message across in a sea of signs and chants,” he writes. Country * Afghanistan Aland Islands Albania Algeria Andorra Angola Anguilla Antarctica Antigua and Barbuda Argentina Armenia Aruba Australia Austria Azerbaijan Bahamas Bahrain Bangladesh Barbados Belarus Belgium Belize Benin Bermuda Bhutan Bolivia, Plurinational State of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Bosnia and Herzegovina Botswana Bouvet Island Brazil British Indian Ocean Territory Brunei Darussalam Bulgaria Burkina Faso Burundi Cambodia Cameroon Canada Cape Verde Cayman Islands Central African Republic Chad Chile China Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Colombia Comoros Congo Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Cook Islands Costa Rica Cote d’Ivoire Croatia Cuba Curaçao Cyprus Czech Republic Denmark Djibouti Dominica Dominican Republic Ecuador Egypt El Salvador Equatorial Guinea Eritrea Estonia Ethiopia Falkland Islands (Malvinas) Faroe Islands Fiji Finland France French Guiana French Polynesia French Southern Territories Gabon Gambia Georgia Germany Ghana Gibraltar Greece Greenland Grenada Guadeloupe Guatemala Guernsey Guinea Guinea-Bissau Guyana Haiti Heard Island and McDonald Islands Holy See (Vatican City State) Honduras Hungary Iceland India Indonesia Iran, Islamic Republic of Iraq Ireland Isle of Man Israel Italy Jamaica Japan Jersey Jordan Kazakhstan Kenya Kiribati Korea, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, Republic of Kuwait Kyrgyzstan Lao People’s Democratic Republic Latvia Lebanon Lesotho Liberia Libyan Arab Jamahiriya Liechtenstein Lithuania Luxembourg Macao Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Madagascar Malawi Malaysia Maldives Mali Malta Martinique Mauritania Mauritius Mayotte Mexico Moldova, Republic of Monaco Mongolia Montenegro Montserrat Morocco Mozambique Myanmar Namibia Nauru Nepal Netherlands New Caledonia New Zealand Nicaragua Niger Nigeria Niue Norfolk Island Norway Oman Pakistan Palestine Panama Papua New Guinea Paraguay Peru Philippines Pitcairn Poland Portugal Qatar Reunion Romania Russian Federation Rwanda Saint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha Saint Kitts and Nevis Saint Lucia Saint Martin (French part) Saint Pierre and Miquelon Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Samoa San Marino Sao Tome and Principe Saudi Arabia Senegal Serbia Seychelles Sierra Leone Singapore Sint Maarten (Dutch part) Slovakia Slovenia Solomon Islands Somalia South Africa South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands South Sudan Spain Sri Lanka Sudan Suriname Svalbard and Jan Mayen Swaziland Sweden Switzerland Syrian Arab Republic Taiwan Tajikistan Tanzania, United Republic of Thailand Timor-Leste Togo Tokelau Tonga Trinidad and Tobago Tunisia Turkey Turkmenistan Turks and Caicos Islands Tuvalu Uganda Ukraine United Arab Emirates United Kingdom United States Uruguay Uzbekistan Vanuatu Venezuela, Bolivarian Republic of Vietnam Virgin Islands, British Wallis and Futuna Western Sahara Yemen Zambia Zimbabwe Email Antarctica and Africa join the marchers Uganda is ready for #MarchForScience!@nmugwanya @ScienceAlly pic.twitter.com/aLysGcpnll— Ongu Isaac (@onguisaac) April 12, 2018 Not even the rain could stop science allies to ‘pour’ onto the streets of Kampala to #marchforscience @ScienceAlly @nbstv pic.twitter.com/Tah54IxPYH— Nassib Mugwanya (@nmugwanya) April 14, 2018 https://t.co/6a2oYmeaKr#marchforscience2018 #MarchForScienceGood to see all the support at the March for Science today pic.twitter.com/xGOuXvYhq7— Steph S. (@StephSEcologist) April 14, 2018 Message of support from Antarctica: overwinterer at the Neumayer Station support the #MarchForScience @ScienceMarchDC @ScienceMarchGER pic.twitter.com/9yGPlJi0m9— AWI Medien (@AWI_de) April 14, 2018 Matt Warren On the streets of New Delhi, to “keep alive the tradition of asking critical questions”Last year, Indian scientists and science supporters didn’t march on 22 April, the day rallies were held in Washington, D.C., and around the globe, but more than 3 months later, on 9 August 2017. This year, they took to the streets on the same day as the rest of the world. Marchers in New Delhi, pictured below, demanded that India’s investment in research and development increase to 3% of gross domestic product and asked for better science education and an end to unscientific thinking.”For me the march is an opportunity to reach out to both members of the society as well as policymakers, to impress upon them the need to strengthen our scientific base,” says Soumitro Banerjee of the Indian Institute of Science and Research in Kolkata, who participated in the New Delhi march. Debabrata Ghosh, a professor at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi, had a wider audience in mind as well: “I attended the March in Delhi to keep alive the tradition of asking critical questions and to bridge the gap between scientists and nonscientists,” he says. It was a small but enthusiastic crowd in Sydney. I look forward to updates as the #MarchforScience rolls around the world! pic.twitter.com/WgTuXYpY9F— Lisa A. Williams (@williamslisaphd) April 14, 2018 Marching in the United States A small but hearty group braved the Midwest weather to march for science in Des Moines today #marchforscience2018 #marchforscienceIA #marchforscience pic.twitter.com/YVmpdgHPw5— MarchForScienceIA (@ScienceMarchIA) April 14, 2018 Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) “Neighborhood nerds” bring science to Berlin’s bars and cafesNo massive crowds at the Brandenburg Gate this year; the organizers of last year’s March for Science in Berlin—which drew more than 10,000 people and ended in a stirring song about freedom of thought—had instead invited scientists to meet with neighbors and other interested people in bars and cafes, an initiative named Kieznerds (“neighborhood nerds.”) After the 2017 success, another march might have become a “poor copy” that might even hurt the cause, says co-organizer Susann Morgner. So she and her colleagues asked Berlin’s watering holes whether they would play host to scientists. Near Downing Street, a small rally focused on climate changeA small but enthusiastic group of about 80 people turned up today for the March for Science in London, a far cry from the estimated 10,000 last year. As the sun shone and several members of the crowd stripped down to T-shirts for perhaps the first time this year, one attendee wondered whether people had been mistakenly put off by the recent spate of stormy weather. Organizer Jillian Sequeira, a conflict studies student at the London School of Economics, had another take. Since last year “the world hasn’t fallen apart,” she said, and the feeling of urgency that characterized the previous march has dissipated.But that doesn’t mean the issues have gone away, Sequeira said. “Even though there are fewer people, the message is just as important as before,” said rally participant Toby Olsen, who was visiting from Rhode Island. “There’s not really an excuse for being quiet.”Those present had a variety of reasons for attending. Guy Pearce, runs the Worthing and Hove branch of Skeptics in the Pub, said that he was concerned that science funding was not a priority for the government. “Science works,” said another attendee, Duncan Rasor. “When somebody undermines that … we need to show support.” A common motivation was concern about the impact of recent policy decisions, particularly in the United States. Emma Fernandes, a visiting environmental science student also from Rhode Island, said that she was there to protest the Trump administration’s roll-back of environmental protections.She was in the right crowd. The list of speakers this year was dominated by environmental groups such as Friends of the Earth, climate researchers, and self-proclaimed activists, so climate change was inevitably high on the agenda. “Science must play a central role in the pursuit of climate justice,” said speaker Rupert Stuart-Smith of the UK Youth Climate Coalition. Sequeira said this focus was intentional: Whereas last year’s talks were mainly given by people from research institutes, this year she wanted to connect people with local organizations that they could get involved with—and most of those were groups involved in climate work.There was no actual marching this year, but the 2-hour rally took place just across the road from Downing Street, the crowd mirroring the cluster of tourists hoping to get a glance at Prime Minister Theresa May. And given the focus of the day’s talks, the location seemed appropriate. Dorothy Guerrero of advocacy group Global Justice Now summed it up: “Science is political.” —​Matt Warren Marchers asked for India to spend 3% of its gross domestic product on science. A sign at the London rally Matt Warren Some two dozen venues joined in, hosting talks about chemical experiments, animal communication, and viruses. One of them was La Tazza, a cafe in the trendy Prenzlauer Berg district whose owner, Delia Lemke, happens to be a professional science communicator. Some 10 guests sat at a long table for a discussion about “the importance of trust in modern times,” led by communication researcher Stefanie Molthagen-Schnöring of the University of Applied Sciences for Engineering and Economics in Berlin. (She and her husband have held similar debates at their home the past 3 years.)To kick off the discussion, Molthagen-Schnöring cited alarming studies showing the diminished public trust in traditional media. She mentioned the work of German sociologist Niklas Luhmann, who has argued that trust reduces complexity. Although trust between individuals or within organizations is a well-researched topic, trust within the public sphere deserves more study, Molthagen-Schnöring said.The group discussed several questions, including how trust can be re-established in the Middle East as a precondition for peace talks. A student in regional management wondered how trust can be reactivated after it has eroded; a futurologist explained the limits to his predictions, which made him more trustworthy, a teacher who also took part in the discussion said. A participant working in science communication argued that researchers and scientific press officers should be clear about limitations and mistakes in science in order to build trust.Kieznerds organizers had hoped that a considerable part of the audience would be nonacademic. But although the group in La Tazza included an artist and an au pair from China, the majority had links to science. The problem may just be that Prenzlauer Berg is home to many young academics, Lemke says. On Tuesday, Molthagen-Schnöring will lead a discussion in a low-income neighborhood with run-down highrise buildings where she might find more Berliners who have no connection to science. —Hinnerk Feldwisch-Drentrup The March for Science celebrated its anniversary today. And although the turnout around the world was significantly smaller than last year, supporters haven’t lost any of their energy.The global grassroots movement has evolved from having a million people take to the streets in 2017 in more than 450 cities to year-round advocacy for science and for evidence-based policies by government officials. But 14 April is still the big event for many local groups.Below are some of the highlights from events around the world, including the flagship rally in Washington, D.C. Katie Langin In Virginia, “it will be different this year”One person preparing for today’s event is Margaret Breslau, who last year helped lead a March for Science in Blacksburg, Virginia, that attracted more than 900 people. This year, she’s not sure how many people might show up, and she expects the tone of the march to be different. Instead of focusing on science “with a big S,” she says, she expects speakers and marchers to focus more on how the work scientists do affects social issues. Speakers, for example, plan to read statements from incarcerated people about the environmental and health conditions in prisons. There’s also likely to be discussion about a controversial local pipeline project and climate change.“For me, it’s not just speaking out against the people and administrations denying science and defunding science and discrediting science,” says Breslau, who chairs Blacksburg’s Coalition for Social Justice. “I also want people to know that people are impacted every day by science, for better or worse. Science has incredible power. I think a lot of scientists probably do factor this in, but there has to be a human good.”She credits March for Science organizers with maintaining communications since last year’s event. “They’ve been very good about it,” she says. “I found they’ve stayed engaged, and that’s really important. You have a lot of power in your hands when you do a national march, and keeping the energy up and the education is hard. I just can’t imagine. They’ve kept me engaged.”And she doesn’t see this year’s march as the end of her engagement. “We have to keep building on what happens,” Breslau says. “As long as scientists are being silenced and cuts to education and programs [are happening] … you just have to keep going, that’s all.” —​Catherine Matacic In Washington, D.C., fewer marchers but still fired up by Trump policiesAt today’s march and rally on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., the flagship event of the day’s global series of rallies, the crowd that gathered under sunny skies was considerably smaller than at the inaugural March for Science a year ago, when attendees packed the same space, a wide expanse near the Washington Monument, in the rain.“It’s disappointing to see so few people” at the rally, said John Cosgrove, a retired high school science teacher who traveled from Easton, Pennsylvania, to attend, as he did last year. “It’s waned a little bit, but the energy is still there.”Science organizations that partnered with today’s March, among them AAAS (the publisher of Science), aimed to promote a nonpartisan message of support for science and its use in public policy. That message was echoed by today’s speakers, who included internet pioneer Vinton Cerf; public health expert Susan Sorenson of the University of Pennsylvania, who spoke about the need for research on gun violence; and David Titley, a professor of meteorology at Pennsylvania State University in State College and former chief oceanographer of the U.S. Navy. Titley led a Navy review of the effects of global warming on the Arctic, and said that when it comes to climate, “Ultimately the facts on the ground and the evidence win.”But national politics and the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump were very much on the minds of many in the crowd.“Since Trump got into office, Scott Pruitt [administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency] has been rolling back environmental regulations,” said Dianne Holland, who lives in northern Virginia and whose husband works for a government science agency. She attended last year’s March for Science, and since then, “I think what’s been happening with the administration has gotten worse. But I think the activism for science has improved.”For example, she said, attending last year’s rally helped encourage her to work in her state to support petitions to ban offshore drilling for oil and natural gas. “I am more aware of the details of what’s happening than a year ago.”Cosgrove, who carried a sign reading “Science: a candle in the dark”—an homage to a Carl Sagan book by that name —said he worries about efforts in states to remove the science of climate change from school textbooks. He also fears the Trump administration is ignoring science in decisions such as withdrawing the United States from the Paris accord to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.Jenny Kolber, an 11-year-old from Point Pleasant, New Jersey, carried a sign that said: “I can’t believe I’m marching to save reality.” She was supposed to attend school today, in a make-up session for a series of winter snow days. But she and her mom drove to Washington, D.C., for the march instead because science is her favorite subject and she’s concerned that scientific facts are being denied. “I love school, but I’d come here every day.” After a brief pause, she added: “If my parents let me.”Children also took center stage at the podium. Max Schill, a 9-year-old from Williamstown, New Jersey, who has a genetic condition called Noonan syndrome, spoke about the need for more funding to fight rare diseases. Research to find cures can cost billions, he said, and he doesn’t have that kind of money in his “big blue piggy bank.”After the speeches, several hundred marchers walked along Constitution Avenue from the Washington Monument to the U.S. Capitol, led by organizers carrying the same “March For Science” banner as last year. The march route was packed with onlookers—mostly there to see the cherry blossoms, visit museums, and otherwise enjoy the nice weather—and many stopped to watch the marchers pass by. Outside the National Gallery of Art, one man took photos and shouted “Science is cool! Go science!” Nearby, a woman asked her companions: “Can we get in?” — Katie Langin and Jeffrey Brainard #ScienceMarchNYC #MarchForScience #KnowledgeIsPower pic.twitter.com/Od8AFGZNyQ— Teodora Pavkovic (@PsycoachTP) April 14, 2018 Marches make a statement in the Philippines, Africa, and EuropeLarge and small, events are underway around the globe. Click here to see a map of all the scheduled March for Science events. Twitter is a good place to see what’s happening on the ground: Narrandera has now been added as an official #MarchForScience location! pic.twitter.com/GIxbFvB2F0— Fiona Caldarevic (@FionaMagic) April 14, 2018 And we’re off!!#marchforsciencesydney #sciencemarchau #sciencenotsilence pic.twitter.com/RWP2Z2oUSl— GB-WildLyf (@MistressGeorge) April 14, 2018 Manoj Singh Hinnerk Feldwisch-Drentrup Agham-Advocates of Science &Technology for the People joined other scientists in holding the March for Science Philippines #marchforscience pic.twitter.com/4dMNvKvBqr— Agham Youth UPManila (@aghamyouth_upm) April 23, 2017 #MarchForScience #Oakland pic.twitter.com/FeObh6H1eY— JJP (@phelanjj2) April 14, 2018 “There’s not really an excuse for being quiet,” says Toby Olsen (left), who attended the London rally with Emma Fernandes (right). We did it @ScienceAlly #MarchForScience #Uganda pic.twitter.com/S5km901K1E— Ongu Isaac (@onguisaac) April 14, 2018 By Science News StaffApr. 14, 2018 , 12:15 AM It is amazing how UKZN staff, students and various stakeholders have come in numbers to support the March for Science which starts at Durban City Hall. pic.twitter.com/alpN4EDOMI— University of KZN (@UKZN) April 14, 2018last_img read more

Zombie Worms Frozen for 40000 Years Have Come Back to Life

first_imgWhat’s it like to take a 40,000-year-long nap? After digging up hundreds of samples of frozen soil in Siberia, a group of researchers took the permafrost sections back to their lab, and found tiny worms in the soil. The permafrost sediment was 40,000 years old by the scientists’ estimate. And, they discovered, the frozen worms, called nematodes, were not dead but preserved.They thawed the nematodes, which are from the Pleistocene era, and are now releasing the news that the 40,000-year-old life forms were, once revived, able to move and eat.The researchers “slowly thawed them over several weeks,” said Business Insider. “The researchers put them in petri dishes with food, stored at 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit).” The sites they took the samples from are in Yakutia, which is reportedly the coldest region of Russia.Map of the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), Russian Federation.The nematodes were nurtured back to life in a laboratory at the Institute of Physico-Chemical and Biological Problems of Soil Science, which is near Moscow. A team of Russian researchers worked with geoscientists from Princeton University to analyze over 300 frozen worms to find suitable candidates. Two species were viable for reviving.This marks the first documented occasion when multi-cellular organisms have returned to functioning after being frozen for extreme lengthy periods.Colorized electron micrograph of soybean cyst nematode (Heterodera) and egg.“Though nematodes are tiny — typically measuring about 1 millimeter in length — they are known to possess impressive abilities. Some are found living 0.8 miles (1.3 kilometers) below Earth’s surface, deeper than any other multicellular animal,” according to LiveScience.In their paper, the researchers said that the Pleistocene nematodes “have some adaptive mechanisms that may be of scientific and practical importance for the related fields of science, such as cryomedicine, cryobiology, and astrobiology.”In May, the researchers published their findings in the journal Doklady Biological Sciences, and the study became available online in July 2018.Caenorhabditis elegans, a free-living transparent nematode (roundworm), about 1 mm in length. Fluorescence micrograph.“The nematodes weren’t the first organism to awaken from millennia in icy suspension. Previously, another group of scientists had identified a giant virus that was resuscitated after spending 30,000 years frozen in Siberian permafrost,” said LiveScience.Types of bacteria, algae, yeasts, seeds, and spores have also been found to remain viable even after being frozen in permafrost for thousands or even millions of years. But not an organism as complex as the nematode.Brave Tourists Plunge Into River in World’s Coldest VillageThose involved in cryogenic preservation are intrigued by the nematodes’ revival.Cryopreservation is the process in which living cells, tissues, organs or entire bodies are protected from decay by storing them at extremely low temperatures. The concept is to preserve the cells, tissues, or bodies for indefinite periods until science has caught up and some form of technology is available to revive them, bring them back to life and maybe cure the condition that killed them. Such technology doesn’t exist, though.Cryogenically preserved samples being removed from a liquid nitrogen dewer.“It is currently science fiction to suggest that a person could be brought back to life in the future even considering technological advances,” Dr. Channa Jayasena, clinical senior lecturer in reproductive endocrinology at Imperial College London, told CNN. “Cryonics has risks for the patient, poses ethical issues for society, is highly expensive, but has no proven benefit. If this was a drug, it would never get approved.” Nonetheless, two organizations carry out cryonics in the United States: Alcor, in Arizona, and the Cryonics Institute, in Michigan.Kriorus cryostorage. Photo by Удалова Валерия Викторова CC BY-SA 4.0Russian firm KrioRus is a facility that reportedly offers the service, as is Alcor’s European laboratory in Portugal.Read another story from us: An eerie WWII underwater graveyard of ships still holds the remains of Japanese servicemenOrgans such as the heart and kidneys have never been successfully frozen and thawed. “It is even less likely a whole body, and the brain, could be without irreversible damage,” according to a story in the Daily Mail. There is no estimate on a time in the future when such problems can be solved.Nancy Bilyeau, a former staff editor at Entertainment Weekly, Rolling Stone, and InStyle, has written a trilogy of historical thrillers for Touchstone Books. For more information, go to www.nancybilyeau.com.last_img read more

Winslow School Board elects new officers

first_imgJanuary 23, 2018 Winslow School Board elects new officers By L. Parsons The Winslow Unified School District governing board met last Thursday and started with the election of their officers for the upcoming year. Outgoing board president Marilee Ervien said, “I would like toSubscribe or log in to read the rest of this content. Bottom Adlast_img

Breathing through the nose improves memory consolidation

first_img Source:https://ki.se/en/news/breathing-through-the-nose-aids-memory-storage Reviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Oct 22 2018The way we breathe may affect how well our memories are consolidated (i.e. reinforced and stabilized). If we breathe through the nose rather than the mouth after trying to learn a set of smells, we remember them better, researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden report in The Journal of Neuroscience.Research into how breathing affects the brain has become an ever-more popular field in recent years and new methodologies have enabled more studies, many of which have concentrated on the memory. Researchers from Karolinska Institutet now show that participants who breathe through the nose consolidate their memories better.”Our study shows that we remember smells better if we breathe through the nose when the memory is being consolidated – the process that takes place between learning and memory retrieval,” says Artin Arshamian, researcher at the Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Karolinska Institutet. “This is the first time someone has demonstrated this.”Related StoriesResearchers report how a popular antidepressant drug could rewire the brainResearch sheds light on sun-induced DNA damage and repairSchwann cells capable of generating protective myelin over nerves finds researchOne reason why this phenomenon has not previously been available for study is that the most common laboratory animals – rats and mice – cannot breathe naturally through their mouths.For the study, the researchers had participants learn twelve different smells on two separate occasions. They were then asked to either breathe through their noses or mouths for one hour. When the time was up, the participants were presented with the old as well as a new set of twelve smells, and asked to say if each one was from the learning session or new.The results showed that when the participants breathed through their noses between the time of learning and recognition, they remembered the smells better.New method facilitates measuring activity in the brain”The next step is to measure what actually happens in the brain during breathing and how this is linked to memory,” says Dr Arshamian. “This was previously a practical impossibility as electrodes had to be inserted directly into the brain. We’ve managed to get round this problem and now we’re developing, with my colleague Johan Lundström, a new means of measuring activity in the olfactory bulb and brain without having to insert electrodes.”Earlier research has shown that the receptors in the olfactory bulb detect not only smells but also variations in the airflow itself. In the different phases of inhalation and exhalation, different parts of the brain are activated. But how the synchronization of breathing and brain activity happens and how it affects the brain and therefore our behavior is unknown. Traditional medicine has often, however, stressed the importance of breathing.”The idea that breathing affects our behavior is actually not new,” says Dr Arshamian. “In fact, the knowledge has been around for thousands of years in such areas as meditation. But no one has managed to prove scientifically what actually goes on in the brain. We now have tools that can reveal new clinical knowledge.”last_img read more

Researchers create new devices to mechanically stress retinal cells

first_img Source:https://engineering.usu.edu/news/main-feed/2018/vargis-retinal-cell-mechanical-stress-study Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Oct 25 2018Researchers at Utah State University have developed new devices to mechanically stress human cells in the lab.In a study published in Lab on a Chip, researchers Elizabeth Vargis, a USU assistant professor of biological engineering and Farhad Farjood, a Ph.D. student in Vargis’ Lab, wanted to better understand the triggers of age-related macular degeneration (AMD), a degenerative eye disease and the leading cause of adult blindness in developed countries. Physical changes within the retina are an important factor in the development of AMD. However, the effect of physical changes during the disease is not clearly understood.Related StoriesTransobturator sling surgery shows promise for stress urinary incontinenceInhibition of p38 protein boosts formation of blood vessels in colon cancerStudy reveals long-term benefits of stress urinary incontinence surgery”Physical changes that occur prior to or during disease are difficult to model outside of the body,” said Vargis. “We know that these changes are important, so we decided to build devices to better replicate them.”Currently there are no devices to realistically model varying levels of physical disruption available on the market. Therefore the researchers created two new devices: one that mimics slow and continuous stress levels and one for mimicking high levels of stress.”We used these devices to replicate stress on retinal cells and found that mechanical stress results in the expression of vascular endothelial growth factor, a protein that can cause disease initiation and progression,” said Farjood.The purpose of the study was to mimic changes in cells and find the mechanisms for the initiation and progression of diseases. The study looks at the effects of mechanical stress on elevated protein levels and abnormal development of new blood vessels.Besides AMD, mechanical stress can occur in other diseases including diabetic retinopathy and even cancer.”There are many clinical studies taking place to discover the causes of disease,” said Farjood. “Our work is an example of how engineering techniques can help us better understand the disease mechanisms.”last_img read more

Older adults with CVD more likely to experience rapid functional decline

first_imgReviewed by Alina Shrourou, B.Sc. (Editor)Nov 21 2018In a Journal of the American Geriatrics Society study of adults aged 65 and older who were functionally independent, individuals with cardiovascular disease (CVD) were more likely to experience rapid functional decline than those without.For the 392 individuals with CVD in the study, three distinct trajectories of function emerged over a four-year follow-up period: stable function (32.0 percent), gradual functional decline (44.2 percent), and rapid functional decline (23.8 percent). Similar trajectories were seen for those without CVD, with a smaller proportion in the rapid functional decline group (16.2 percent). Those who were women, older, and had less education and greater comorbidity were especially likely to experience rapid functional decline.”The risk factors identified in this study may be used by clinicians to identify older adults with CVD who would benefit from functional screening and intervention to deter further decline,” said lead author Dr. Tamra Keeney, of the MGH Institute of Health Professions. “Future work should investigate additional factors that are associated with rapid functional decline in late life as well as interventions that can lead to functional improvement in this high-risk group.”​ Source:https://newsroom.wiley.com/press-release/journal-american-geriatrics-society/cardiovascular-disease-may-increase-risk-rapid-funlast_img read more

Study Measuring and monitoring tumor DNA can help reveal early melanoma growth

first_img Source:https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/news/newsroom/news-releases/johns-hopkins-researchers-advance-role-of-circulating-tumor-dna-to-detect-early-melanoma-growth-uncover-treatment-options Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Nov 27 2018Researchers at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center say they have added to evidence that measuring and monitoring tumor DNA that naturally circulates in the blood of melanoma patients can not only reliably help reveal the early stages of cancer growth and spread but also uncover new treatment options that tumor genetic analysis alone may not.”For some patients in our study, ctDNA (circulating tumor DNA) levels measured in a relatively simple blood test revealed tumor mutations that could be potentially targeted with current or new drugs that inhibit tumor growth mutations that are not revealed by genetic profiling of the tumor itself,” says Evan Lipson, M.D., an associate professor of oncology at the Kimmel Cancer Center and a member of The Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy.”For other patients, ctDNA levels accurately predicted disease progression as seen on CT scans, further demonstrating ctDNA’s role as a blood-based biomarker of disease activity in melanoma patients.”Melanoma currently lacks a consistently and wholly reliable predictive blood-based biomarker of disease progression. Having one, Lipson says, would not only improve treatment outcomes but also reduce unnecessary or ineffective therapies.For the study, published in the October 2018 issue of Molecular Oncology, the Kimmel Cancer Center scientists analyzed blood-based ctDNA from 119 advanced-melanoma Johns Hopkins patients. The patients were divided into three groups based on the type of tumor they had and potential mutations that were common and reoccurring in those tumors.The first group of 60 people were patients with radiographically measurable metastatic melanoma, regardless of tumor mutation status. In this group, ctDNA testing revealed a targetable mutation in 38 of the 60 patients. In 33 of those patients, the mutations found using ctDNA matched the mutations found in tumor specimens. In two patients, ctDNA testing revealed a mutation that tumor testing had not.In the second group, there were 29 patients with surgically removed high-risk (stage IIB-IV) melanoma whose tumor tissue revealed any of the seven common mutations. In this group, none of the patients whose melanoma tumors were surgically removed had evidence of disease before the study. However, five of 29 patients were discovered to have recurrent melanoma during the study, and in two of those cases, ctDNA was detected.Related StoriesNew drug combination found to be effective against uveal melanoma in preclinical studiesPatients with HIV DNA in cerebrospinal fluid have high risk of experiencing cognitive deficitsHIV DNA persists in spinal fluid despite treatment, linked to cognitive impairmentThe third group had 30 patients who were receiving or had received therapy for advanced melanoma and had any of the seven common mutations. Of the 30, 17 experienced partial or complete response to therapy, which was confirmed using CT scans over 8, 14, 25 and 38 week periods, and no ctDNA was found in those patients after an initial CT scan evaluation. In the remaining 13 patients, ctDNA was detected during their treatment. In four of those 13, the disease was detected simultaneously by a CT scan and ctDNA results. In four others, ctDNA results predicted disease progression that was confirmed by using CT scan.”When genetic testing of the tumor alone was used for some of the patients, it did not reveal any option for targeted therapy,” Lipson says. “It turned out that when we looked in the bloodstream, lo and behold, we found ctDNA that uncovered options for therapy that provided benefit for patients and that otherwise were not going to be used.”Lipson notes that in general, melanoma patients receiving treatment typically have CT scans performed months apart over time to compare the growth or regression of the tumors. By using repeated ctDNA blood test results that reflect tumor activity in conjunction with those scans, the researchers say the biomarker was predictive of eventual disease progression seen on CT scans. These findings add to evidence that ctDNA testing may help radiologists and oncologists better interpret results of tests and treatments in patients with advanced melanoma.According to the National Cancer Institute, there were 91,270 new cases of melanoma in 2018, making up more than 5 percent of all new cancer cases. There were 9,320 estimated deaths in 2018, and 91.8 percent of patients survive five years or longer.Lipson said while larger trials will be needed to further investigate and confirm the findings, evidence is growing that using ctDNA can refine therapeutic outcomes and uncover additional avenues for therapy for some patients with melanoma.”Our findings may serve as a blueprint for future, randomized investigations designed to further evaluate the clinical utility of incorporating ctDNA analysis among larger groups of patients with melanoma.”last_img read more

Smoking cannabis may increase sperm count

first_imgAn equally plausible interpretation is that our findings could reflect the fact that men with higher testosterone levels are more likely to engage in risk-seeking behaviours, including smoking marijuana.”Dr. Feiby Nassan, Study Author Dr. Jorge Chavarro, Associate Professor of Nutrition and Epidemiology at the Harvard T. H. Chan School, warned that this study only showed that little knowledge we have about marijuana and its effects on reproductive health and fertility.In a statement, Chavarro said that the results cannot be taken on face value and need to be “interpreted with caution”.There have been numerous studies in the past showing that cannabis worsens sperm quality and reduces fertility among men. Hence, Nassan and team did not expect to see an increase in sperm count, and this was entirely contrary to their hypothesis. She also warned that the participants could have under-reported their use of cannabis. By Dr. Ananya Mandal, MDFeb 7 2019Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)A new study has found that men who have smoked cannabis at some point in their lives have higher sperm counts than men who have never smoked the drug. The findings were published in the latest issue of the journal Human Reproduction.Maxx-Studio | ShutterstockThe study, which was conducted by researchers at Harvard University, looked at 1,143 semen samples of 662 men who were registered at different fertility clinics between 2000 and 2017. These men were asked about their cannabis habits and previous drug-taking behavior.The researchers noted that around half of the men enrolled in the study had previously tried or had currently used cannabis.After examining the samples, the researchers found that only around 5 percent of the men who had smoked cannabis before had clinically low sperm counts, compared to 12 percent of the men who had never tried cannabis before.They noted that the average age of the men at the time of sample collection was 36 years and of these participants, 55 percent had used marijuana at some point in their lives.According to the authors of the study, the reason behind this could be the effects of cannabis on the endocannabinoid system of the body. This system sends signals to the brain and these signals may play a role in fertility, they explain.The scientists also noted that the men who had tried or were using cannabis had a higher level of the male hormone testosterone. This could also be responsible for their higher sperm count.last_img read more

Lipidfilled particle plays role in immune function and metabolism

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 1 2019The particles, discovered in mice, may activate immune function and could play a role in preventing metabolic disordersResearchers have discovered that fat tissue releases a lipid-filled particle that has a role in immune function and metabolism. The study, in mice, was published online in the journal Science.Why it mattersObesity appears to activate the immune system, contributing to type 2 diabetes, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, and other disorders. Understanding how fat tissue regulates immune response could lead to the development of new treatments and preventive strategies for metabolic disorders and other obesity-related diseases, according to study leader Anthony Ferrante Jr., MD, PhD, the Tilden-Weger-Bieler Professor of Preventative Medicine at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons.BackgroundSpecialized cells in fat tissue called adipocytes store excess calories as triglycerides, a type of lipid. Adipocytes break down triglycerides into smaller lipids called fatty acids, which are released into the bloodstream to meet the body’s energy needs.In previous studies, Ferrante’s laboratory discovered that, in addition to adipocytes, fat tissue contains many immune cells, including large numbers of macrophages. In other tissues, macrophages engulf and destroy pathogens. “For a long time, we’ve been trying to figure out what these immune cells are doing in fat,” says Ferrante. Several years ago, his research team found that the macrophages found in fat take up and ‘digest’ large amounts of lipid. He and others had assumed that the lipid came from the breakdown products of triglycerides.What the study foundRelated StoriesMathematical model helps identify determinants of persistent MRSA bacteremiaCommon cold virus strain could be a breakthrough in bladder cancer treatmentComplement system shown to remove dead cells in retinitis pigmentosa, contradicting previous researchIn the current study, conducted in mice, the researchers discovered that adipocytes don’t just release the fatty acid components of triglycerides; they also release intact triglycerides that are packaged into small particles. These lipid-filled particles, called adipocyte exosomes (AdExos), are taken up by macrophages in fat. The macrophages rapidly break down the triglyceride in the AdExos and release it as fatty acids, which Ferrante hypothesizes can then be taken up by adipocytes in a lipid cycle that resupplies fat cells with fresh lipid. “There’s a similar mechanism in bone, where osteoclasts — another type of macrophage — break down bone into calcium and phosphate, which are used to make fresh bone. This cycle is critical for bone health. We now wonder whether a similar cycle occurs in fat to maintain its health,” Ferrante notes.In addition, the researchers found that AdExos appear to control the development of immune cells. Scientists don’t have a clear idea about how macrophages develop tissue-specific functions. But Ferrante and his team found that the AdExos may play a central role in “educating” immune cells, inducing bone marrow cells to develop into macrophages that are instructed to digest and recycle lipids.Intriguingly, the AdExo particles were also found in the blood, raising the possibility that they might have effects outside of fat tissue.”Our next step is to investigate whether these lipid particles appear in humans and, if so, whether they contribute to lipids we measure in the circulation and in metabolic diseases,” Ferrante says.Source: https://www.cuimc.columbia.edu/last_img read more

Scientists use 3D imaging to help model complex processes performed by placenta

first_imgReviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Apr 19 2019New three-dimensional imaging of the human placenta has been developed to help understand the reasons for fetal growth restriction – a condition which affects thousands in the UK alone.Across all species of mammals, vital life-giving nutrients are transported around the body by complex networks of blood vessels. Despite the importance of these networks, there is still relatively little known about the physical factors which determine the transport of solutes such as oxygen to tissues and organs.Now, new findings published today in Science Advances, detail three-dimensional imaging research by a group of scientists at The University of Manchester and St Mary’s Hospital. The research has opened up understanding about this vital life-sustaining process by mathematically modelling the human placenta.Related StoriesStudy: Two-thirds of pneumonia patients receive more antibiotics than they probably needIt is okay for women with lupus to get pregnant with proper care, says new studyDon’t Miss the Blood-Brain Barrier Drug Delivery (B3DD) Summit this AugustThe placenta is a life-support system for a growing fetus. The placenta contains numerous terminal villi, small structures containing disordered networks of fetal capillaries that are surrounded by maternal blood.The placenta is unique in that it performs the diverse roles of several organs at once. In particular it allows the exchange of oxygen and vital nutrients between a mother and her developing fetus. However, the importance of the placenta in conditions such as fetal growth restriction, a condition which affects 35,000 pregnancies annually in the UK alone, remains poorly understood.Now a specialist team of scientists made up of mathematicians, physicists, physiologists and clinical consultants, have used 3D imaging to help model some of the complex processes performed by the placenta.Dr Igor Chernyavsky, MRC & Presidential Research Fellow and lead author said: “In our new study we show how the irregular three-dimensional structure of a terminal villus determines its capacity to exchange solutes such as oxygen between mother and fetus.”Combining image analysis and computational fluid dynamics, we can now quantify mathematically the exchange capacity of individual terminal villi. We now anticipate that this advance will aid the development of larger-scale computational models of placental function. We hope that our new understanding of the role of placental geometry in fetal development will help clinicians address diseases where placental structure is compromised.”Source: https://www.manchester.ac.uk/last_img read more

A new approach to predict complications after surgery for patients with larynx

first_imgRadiation damage is something you can’t always see. There have been very few examples in the literature that would explain or predict who’s going to have a complication.”Matthew E. Spector, M.D., assistant professor of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery at Michigan Medicine Reviewed by Kate Anderton, B.Sc. (Editor)May 31 2019A technique that illuminates blood flow during surgery predicted which head and neck cancer patients were likely to have issues with wound healing. It could enable surgeons to make adjustments during surgery or recovery to improve outcomes.A team of surgeons at the University of Michigan Rogel Cancer Center found the approach so successful in a clinical trial that they closed the study early.Most people with larynx cancer will have radiation and chemotherapy. But about one-third of the time, the cancer will return or will prove resistant, leaving surgery as the next option.At this point, tissue damage from the radiation adds challenges to the operation. When the surgeon closes the wound, damaged tissue can interfere. For about 40% of patients, this will lead to a pharyngocutaneous fistula, a hole in the neck where saliva can leak out. It can cause bleeding or infections, keeping patients in the hospital longer, and in 10% of cases sending them back to the operating room to fix it. Source:Michigan Medicine – University of Michigancenter_img Related StoriesHow cell-free DNA can be targeted to prevent spread of tumorsCancer killing capability of lesser-known immune cells identifiedStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskSpector is the senior author on a paper published earlier this year in Annals of Surgical Oncology.Researchers enrolled 41 patients who were undergoing laryngectomy after radiation. After removing the tumor but before closing the throat, anesthesiologists gave the patients an intravenous injection of a type of medical dye, indocyanine green. The dye circulates within about 40 seconds. Surgeons then use laser angiography, which illuminates the dye, allowing them to observe blood flow.The results were clear-cut: patients with lower blood flow had a significantly higher risk of developing a fistula, whereas patients with high blood flow had a very low risk of wound complications.Knowing this, Spector suggests a few possible interventions. One could be cutting out a wider margin of tissue to get a cleaner, healthier edge. Another possibility is to keep high-risk patients in the hospital longer, while sending the low-risk patients home more quickly.The laser angiography approach would be straightforward to implement in many setting. It’s already used by other surgeons, including in breast reconstruction, so many hospitals already own the equipment. The technique has little impact on patients because it can be administered so quickly while they are still under anesthesia. Reactions to the indocyanine are minimal.Researchers are developing a randomized clinical trial to assess whether cutting back more tissue leads to fewer fistulas in the high-risk group.”We need to find an intervention that can lower this risk,” Spector says.last_img read more

Amazon urged not to sell facial recognition tool to police

first_imgThe American Civil Liberties Union and other privacy advocates are asking Amazon to stop marketing a powerful facial recognition tool to police, saying law enforcement agencies could use the technology to “easily build a system to automate the identification and tracking of anyone.” Chinese police don high-tech glasses to nab suspects The tool, called Rekognition, is already being used by at least one agency—the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in Oregon—to check photographs of unidentified suspects against a database of mug shots from the county jail, which is a common use of such technology around the country.But privacy advocates have been concerned about expanding the use of facial recognition to body cameras worn by officers or safety and traffic cameras that monitor public areas, allowing police to identify and track people in real time.Amazon is offering the technology at a low cost to police agencies. Given its reach, the tech giant’s entry into the market could vastly accelerate government surveillance capabilities, the privacy advocates fear, with potentially dire consequences for minorities who are already arrested at disproportionate rates, immigrants who may be in the country illegally or political protesters.”People should be free to walk down the street without being watched by the government,” the groups wrote in a letter to Amazon on Tuesday. “Facial recognition in American communities threatens this freedom.”Amazon released Rekognition in late 2016, and the sheriff’s office in Washington County, west of Portland, became one of its first law enforcement agency customers.A year later, deputies were using it about 20 times per day—for example, to identify burglary suspects in store surveillance footage. Last month, the agency adopted policies governing its use, noting that officers in the field can use real-time face recognition to identify suspects who are unwilling or unable to provide their own ID, or if someone’s life is in danger.”We are not mass-collecting. We are not putting a camera out on a street corner,” said Deputy Jeff Talbot, a spokesman for the sheriff’s office. “We want our local community to be aware of what we’re doing, how we’re using it to solve crimes—what it is and, just as importantly, what it is not.”It cost the sheriff’s office just $400 to load 305,000 booking photos into the system and $6 per month in fees to continue the service, according to an email obtained by the ACLU under a public records request. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. In this March 12, 2015, file photo, Seattle police officer Debra Pelich, right, wears a video camera on her eyeglasses as she talks with Alex Legesse before a small community gathering in Seattle. While the Seattle Police Department bars officers from using real-time facial recognition in body camera video, privacy activists are concerned that a proliferation of the technology could turn the cameras into tools of mass surveillance. The ACLU and other organizations on Tuesday, May 22, 2018, asked Amazon to stop selling its facial-recognition tool, called Rekognition, to law enforcement agencies. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File) This Sept. 6, 2012, file photo, shows the Amazon logo. The American Civil Liberties Union and other privacy activists are asking Amazon to stop marketing a powerful facial recognition tool to police, saying law enforcement agencies could use the technology to “easily build a system to automate the identification and tracking of anyone.” (AP Photo/Reed Saxon, File) Last year, the Orlando, Florida, Police Department announced it would begin a pilot program relying on Amazon’s technology to “use existing city resources to provide real-time detection and notification of persons-of-interest, further increasing public safety.”Orlando has a network of public safety cameras, and in a presentation posted to YouTube this month , Ranju Das, who leads Amazon Rekognition, said the company would receive feeds from the cameras, search them against photos of people being sought by law enforcement and notify police of any hits.”It’s about recognizing people, it’s about tracking people, and then it’s about doing this in real time, so that the law enforcement officers … can be then alerted in real time to events that are happening,” he said.The Orlando Police Department declined to make anyone available for an interview about the program but said in an email that it “is not using the technology in an investigative capacity or in any public spaces at this time.”The testing has been limited to eight city-owned cameras and a handful of officers who volunteered to have their images used to see if the technology works, Sgt. Eduardo Bernal said in a follow-up email Tuesday.”As this is a pilot and not being actively used by OPD as a surveillance tool, there is no policy or procedure regarding its use as it is not deployed in that manner,” Bernal wrote.The letter to Amazon followed public records requests from ACLU chapters in California, Oregon and Florida. More than two dozen organizations signed it, including the Electronic Frontier Foundation and Human Rights Watch.Clare Garvie, an associate at the Center on Privacy and Technology at Georgetown University Law Center, said part of the problem with real-time face recognition is its potential impact on free-speech rights.While police might be able to videotape public demonstrations, face recognition is not merely an extension of photography but a biometric measurement—more akin to police walking through a demonstration and demanding identification from everyone there.Amazon’s technology isn’t that different from what face recognition companies are already selling to law enforcement agencies. But its vast reach and its interest in recruiting more police departments to take part raise concerns, she said.”This raises very real questions about the ability to remain anonymous in public spaces,” Garvie said. © 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. Amazon Web Services did not answer emailed questions about how many law enforcement agencies are using Rekognition, but in a written statement the company said it requires all of its customers to comply with the law and to be responsible in the use of its products.The statement said some agencies have used the program to find abducted people, and amusement parks have used it to find lost children. British broadcaster Sky News used Rekognition to help viewers identify celebrities at the royal wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle last weekend. Citation: Amazon urged not to sell facial recognition tool to police (2018, May 22) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-05-aclu-amazon-shouldnt-face-recognition-tech.html Explore furtherlast_img read more

Spotlight on role of automated trading amid Wall Street swoon

first_imgSome critics question whether the stock market’s recent swoon has been exacerbated by automated trading This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. “They are looking to buy the cheap ones,” Tabb said, adding, “most models actually dampen volatility rather than enhance volatility.”‘Flash Crash’At the same time, Tabb concedes that the proliferation of exchanges where stocks are bought and sold can result in limited liquidity on platforms. That can make markets vulnerable to a “flash crash,” although this possibility was mitigated with circuit breakers instituted after 2010.The system of automated trading is “all about supply and demand like it’s always been,” Tabb said. “It’s just a supply and demand at a quicker pace.” Another oft-cited risk is the tendency for computers to behave with “herd”-like behavior because they are engineered in a similar fashion. “Because of the design similarities, they tend to buy and sell futures at similar price levels,” said Peter Hahn, co-founder of Bridgeton Research Group.”When they are hitting ‘sell’ stop-loss levels at similar times they can add significant price pressure at the beginning of down-trends,” said Hahn, adding that the impact is more muted when trades are triggered by fundamental factors, such as an economic indicator.Kolanovic warned that the shift away from active investment could pinch the market’s ability to “prevent and recover from large drawdowns.””The $2 trillion rotation from active and value to passive and momentum strategies since the last crisis eliminated a large pool of assets that would be standing ready to buy cheap public securities and backstop a market disruption,” Kolanovic said. Explore further Since the 2008 financial crisis, investors have increasingly turned to computerized trading systems that have been programmed to render quickfire “buy” and “sell” orders based on economic data, utterances of central bankers or complex artificial intelligence software that employ algorithms.Though set up by humans, these trades are based on a snap assessment that lacks the subtle discernment of the human eye. Whenever an unexpected lurch on Wall Street slams investors, fingers are pointed at such systems that increasingly dominate trading. Critics have questioned whether the market’s recent swoon—which could result in the worst December since the Great Depression—is due to a liquidity drain and other unanticipated effects of the computerization of trading, rather than fundamental economic factors at a time when US unemployment is low and economic growth is solid. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, in a recent interview with Bloomberg, blamed the uptick in volatility on the surge in high-frequency trading, a type of automated trading.Trading from quantitative hedge funds relying on computer models now accounts for 28.7 percent of overall volumes in the United States, according to the Tabb Group consultancy. That is more than twice the share from five years ago and, since 2017, above the percentage held by individual investors. JPMorgan Chase analyst Marko Kolanovic has estimated that only about one-third of the assets in the stock market are actively managed and that only 10 percent of the daily trading volume is the result of specific deliberation.But while the rise of automated trading is undeniable, it is less clear that it is responsible for increased market turmoil. Traders have had a nervous December, which could be Wall Street’s worst since the Great Depression Tabb Group Founder Larry Tabb said most electronic trading firms employ algorithms that identify and take advantage of price discrepancies between the price of a given security and what it fetches elsewhere. Greater market liquidity actually increases risk: study The recent tumult in financial markets has shined a light on the rising role of automated trading on Wall Street and whether it is exacerbating volatility. © 2018 AFP Citation: Spotlight on role of automated trading amid Wall Street swoon (2018, December 28) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-12-spotlight-role-automated-wall-street.htmllast_img read more

The Most Interesting Science News Articles of the Week

first_img A September 2013 image shows the then-brand new island. Credit: Newscom Tiny ripples called magnons could lure even a fleeting, lightweight dark matter particle out of hiding. [Read more about the particles.] Twin Faults The universe is full of “runaway stars” trying to escape their home galaxy (including the reddish-blue dot in the bottom-right corner of this NASA telescope image). A new study suggests that some of these stellar renegades may in fact be rare supernova survivors. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech We still don’t know what the X-37B is doing up there, however. [Read more about the rare sight.] Rebel Wreaking Havoc Scientists know very little about the faults that ripped apart during the massive SoCal quakes. [Read more about the oddity.] Follow Live Science @livescience, Facebook & Google+.by Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksYou May LikeVikings: Free Online GamePlay this for 1 min and see why everyone is addicted!Vikings: Free Online GameUndoTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionOne Thing All Liars Have in Common, Brace YourselfTruthFinder People Search SubscriptionUndoInfinityKloudSmart USB Stick Backs Up Everything On Your Computer.InfinityKloudUndoDermalMedixDoctor’s New Discovery Makes Foot Calluses “Vanish”DermalMedixUndoGundry MD Total Restore SupplementU.S. Cardiologist: It’s Like a Pressure Wash for Your InsidesGundry MD Total Restore SupplementUndoairdogusa.comThe World’s Best Washable Air Purifierairdogusa.comUndo Astronaut Buzz Aldrin walks on the surface of the moon near the leg of the lunar module Eagle during the Apollo 11 mission on July 20, 1969. Credit: NASA Cosmic, cosmic, cosmic, cosmic, cosmic chameleon, you come and go. [Read more about the theory.] Dancin’ Bones A supercomputer simulation of a disc galaxy. The right-hand side of the image shows the gas density within the disk galaxy, while the stars twinkle as bright dots. The left side of the image shows how forces change inside the gas according to Chameleon Theory, which could explain a discrepancy in our measurements and models of dark energy. Credit: Christian Arnold/Baojiu Li/Durham University Four stars that seemingly survived a massive supernova explosion are now lighter, speedier and anxious to leave their home galaxy. [Read more about the renegade.] Dangerous Dark Energy Could quasiparticles called magnons unmask a lightweight dark matter particle? Credit: Shutterstock Olive python feeding on a wallaby. Credit: Ken Griffiths/Shutterstock A portrait of Charles Etienne Gudin, who fought in Napoleon’s Grande Armée. Credit: Photo12/UIG/Getty Images An onlooker views newly ruptured ground after a 7.1-magnitude earthquake struck on July 6, 2019, near Ridgecrest, California. Credit: Mario Tama/Getty Images More than 200,000 Facebook users say they’re interested in joining a raid on Nevada’s infamous Area 51 air base this summer. [Read more about the raid.] Big Appetite A mud-volcano island that burst from the waters off the coast of Pakistan during a deadly earthquake in 2013 has disappeared beneath the waves. [Read more about the disappearance.] Moon Landing Explained As this sign outside of Nevada’s infamous Area 51 military base reminds would-be visitors, guards are authorized to respond to trespassers with deadly force. Credit: Barry King/Getty Images It’s been half a century since the magnificent Apollo 11 moon landing, yet some people still don’t believe it actually happened. [Read more about the reasoning.] Unmasking Dark Matter? Teeth and scales didn’t stop an Australian olive python from getting a meal. [Read more about the snack.]Headbutting Tiny Worms Are Really, Really LoudThis rapid strike produces a loud ‘pop’ comparable to those made by snapping shrimps, one of the most intense biological sounds measured at sea.Your Recommended PlaylistVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9接下来播放Why Is It ‘Snowing’ Salt in the Dead Sea?01:53 facebook twitter 发邮件 reddit 链接https://www.livescience.com/50718-weekend-reading.html?jwsource=cl已复制直播00:0000:3500:35  No Secrets Revealed The U.S. Air Force’s X-37B robotic space plane in orbit, as photographed by satellite tracker Ralf Vandebergh. Credit: © Ralf Vandebergh An excavation in a peculiar place — under the foundation of a dance floor in Russia — has uncovered the remains of one of Napoleon Bonaparte’s favorite generals: a one-legged man who was killed by a cannonball more than 200 years ago, news sources report. [Read more about the remains.] Vanishing Island Each week we uncover the most interesting and informative articles from around the world, here are some of the coolest stories in science this week. Big Turnoutlast_img read more